How to Help a Coworker Who May Be at Risk for Suicide

October 11, 2019

News Type:  Weekly Spark, Weekly Spark News


Coworkers can play a key role in workplace suicide prevention. Experts recommend looking for signs of crisis in coworkers, such as feelings of hopelessness or being a burden to others. If you notice significant changes in a coworker’s mood or behavior, ask how they are doing and let them know you care. If they disclose thoughts of suicide, help connect them with resources, such as an employee assistance program or a crisis hotline. Avoid judging or gossiping about a coworker who is struggling. While you are not responsible for a coworker’s mental health, reaching out and staying connected can help them feel less alone. “The follow-up is very important,” said Christine Moutier, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s chief medical officer. “It tells the person that you do care and that you’re not running away from the problem; that you can handle it; that you don’t judge them.”

Spark Extra! Learn more about the role of coworkers in preventing suicide.